Health Transition begins at age 14 and can continue throughout the young adult’s twenties. There are activities that both families and the teen and young adult should be doing at each step along the way. For example, families can help teens and young adults take more responsibility for their health. This includes such things as helping them learn how to make their own doctor appointments or making sure that they understand their own health conditions. Another task is to review options for insurance and medical decision-making.
Checklists show you all the tasks that can help you and your family member during the transition process. They can help determine whether a teen or young adult is ready and able to do a task independently, with help, or not at all. Timelines tell you what activities are appropriate at each age.
Once you know what needs to be done, you can work with your family member to put together a transition plan. The plan outlines the tasks as well as the steps and the timeframe needed to complete each task.
There are a number of resources that combine transition plans, timelines, and checklists. Some are specific to a certain state, but all have valuable information.
- Florida HATS: Three guides are available for ages 12-14 (key pages are 1, 16-23), ages 15-17 (key pages 1, 21-27), and ages 18 and older (key pages 1, 3-16); helps you look at future goals; includes worksheets and checklists to see if you are able to do health activities or if you need support; includes transition planning guide (Institute for Child Health Policy, University of Florida).
- Planning For a Healthy Transition: A Family Transition Plan (Washington State DOH): Offers tips for parents according to child’s age; checklists for young adults on what they are able to do; advice on looking for a new doctor.
- Transition Readiness Assessment for Parents/Caregivers (Got Transition): Checklist to help assess youth’s ability to do certain health-related activities.
- Six Core Elements of Health Care Transition (Got Transition): Includes Transition Action Plan, readiness checklists and transfer of care checklists.
- Transition Planning for Adolescents with Special Health Care Needs and Disabilities: Information for Families and Teens (Institute for Community Inclusion/UAP at Boston Children’s Hospital): Booklet mixes handouts, tips sheets, and checklists directed at families and ones directed at teens; health care skills checklist.
- Pediatric to Adult Health Care Transition Planning Checklist (National Diabetes Education Program): One-page checklist by month/years prior to switch to adult health care.
- New Directions, New Doctors: Changing from Pediatric to Adult Health Care (NIH): One-page article with some links.
- Transition from School to Adult Life Time Lines (The Arc of MA): Two-page brochure includes some definitions and bulleted pointers of things to do at each age.
- Person-Centered Planning: Pathways to Your Future (University of Arizona): Toolkit on doing a person-centered plan; includes section on health care and transition.